If you’ve been following along for a while, you might remember that a couple of years ago, I declared Revel’s beans on toast ‘the best vegan brunch in Auckland’. It was a staple of my diet for a while: one Sunday morning I walked into Revel, nodded at the barista & without exchanging a word, a few minutes later a soy flat white arrived with a plate of beans.
The range of vegan brunch options in Auckland has expanded hugely since then, but Revel’s beans remained a favourite. So it was a shock when earlier this year, the menu was changed and my regular order was nowhere to be seen. The selection was as vegan-friendly as ever, but unfamiliar.
The two new vegan things on Revel’s breakfast menu are:
Vegan Tofu Florentine with roasted potatoes and capsicum, spinach, grilled tomatoes, tofu and coconut sauce. This is a big plate of food that looks pretty similar to the Vegan Revellers, but is different in a few key ways: no gluten (& consequently no toast), creamy coconut sauce instead of the chunky hummus that the Revelers used to include, and generally fewer flavours. This is still a good option for hungry mornings, but I don’t like it as much as the Revelers.
Apple & Cinnamon Buckwheat Pancakes with fruit compote and maple syrup. These can be ordered vegetarian (with crème fraîche) or vegan (without). Sweet vegan brunch options are still pretty rare around this town, and it’s good to have pancake options. I like the texture of Revel’s pancakes a lot, but the couple of times I’ve ordered them, I’ve found them a bit dry. In the vegan version, the crème fraîche isn’t replaced with anything, and the ratio of topping to pancake is a bit lacking. If I ordered these again, I’d probably ask for extra fruit or syrup.
I mentioned that I missed the beans on toast one visit, and Jeff recommended a menu hack: the vegan nachos, without nacho chips, on toast. Revel’s nachos are great, but I found that the spicyness of this combination wasn’t right for breakfast.
But, having brunch with Keeli a while ago, she saw another potential vegan option hiding between the lines of the official menu.
That option was the vegan ‘Huevos Rancheros’. It’s black beans and corn, salsa and avocado on a tortilla, but with grilled or scrambled tofu instead of actual huevos. Though Mexican-style like the nachos, its bean mix is designed for breakfast and more mildly spicy. This was delicious, and I’m looking forward to eating it again.